About the Author
Eberhard Arnold (1883–1935) studied theology, philosophy, and education at Breslau, Halle, and Erlangen, where he received his doctorate in 1909. He became a sought-after writer, lecturer, and speaker in his native Germany. Arnold was active in the student revival movement sweeping the country and became secretary of the German Christian Student Union. In 1916 he became literary director of the Furche Publishing House in Berlin and editor of its monthly periodical. Like thousands of young Europeans, Eberhard Arnold and his wife Emmy were disillusioned by the failure of the establishment – especially the churches – to provide answers to the problems facing society in the turbulent years following World War I. In 1920, out of a desire to put into practice the teachings of Jesus, the Arnolds and their five young children turned their backs on the privileges of middle-class life in Berlin and moved to the small German village of Sannerz. There, with a handful of like-minded seekers who drew inspiration from the Youth Movement, the sixteenth-century Anabaptists, and the early Christians, they founded an intentional community on the basis of the Sermon on the Mount. The community, which supported itself by agriculture and a small but vibrant publishing house, attracted thousands of visitors and eventually grew into the international communal movement known as the Bruderhof.